Species: Topaz var. Imperial
Locality: Vermelhão mine, Saramenha, Ouro Preto district, Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Dimensions: 6.8 x 2 x 1.6 cm. (39 grams)
“Imperial” topaz from Brazil has been one of this gem-rich country’s most prized and sought-after gemstones for over four hundred years. Imperial topaz is essentially unique to the Ouro Preto District in Minas Gerais State, where it occurs as typically orange crystals, most of which are incomplete and used for cabachon or faceting material. Complete, well-terminated crystals over ~5 cm in size are quite scarce to begin with, but what makes this superb topaz exceptional is the intense “wine” color, a gorgeous shade of pinkish-red which is the rarest and most sought-after color in imperial topaz. The crystal is in excellent condition (it does have one professional repair which has been done in a leading mineral lab and is impossible to see), and has a wonderful pyramidal termination. A superb example of a prized Brazilian classic, from older finds. Comes with a custom acrylic display base by Sunnywood. The topaz weighs 39 grams. Annette Slade photo.